Five Asses of the Tobacco World

The smoking of pipes and cigars, like any hobby or manly enthusiasm, includes a great breadth and variety of style, taste, approach, budget, interest, etcetera etcetera. There are many ways to enjoy tobacco, and to do it well.

Like any other hobby or manly enthusiasm, the enjoyment of fine tobacco can be marred by the presence of snobs and illuminati. I do not want to be such a one; there are plenty who would tell me that I am not qualified to be such a one. I am merely an enthusiastic enthusiast.

So please do not take me as a tobacco snob when I write this. I believe that you, as a fellow tobacco enthusiast, will recognize these men. And please let me know in the comments section if you can think of any more of these types, I'd love to add on to this post.

So without further ado, I give you The Asses of the Tobacco World.

1. The guy who calls a cigar a "gar".

When you call a cigar a "stick", you're already kind of pushing it. The universality of the term "stick" makes its use a little less ass-ish, but there's no escape from the condemnation of the word "gar". If you haven't heard it used, just wait. You'll be seated on some plump leather chair, enjoying a nice stick, when all of a sudden you will feel like someone's scraping figernails down the chalkboard of your spine.

"Have you tried the Opus Blah? That's a nice gar."

I went looking for a video to post here, but every single, I mean every single result on YouTube for "smoking a gar" was for a gay guy in leathers, or shirtless, smoking his "gar". Putting that sort of thing on YouTube is rude, but we'll let that pass for now.

So here's a very hetero picture, from the site Is it not douchey? Yes, it is.

2. The guy who says "I never smoke aromatics."

Really? Never? Okay. Just don't be rude about it.

I smoke every day, and I'll go for a year without smoking an aromatic. But behold: I am not ashamed to have black cavendish in my personal blend (which I'll go without for long stretches, which is why I can go so long sans aromatics). I will tell you what my "favorite aromatic" might be.

And yes, I cringe when newbies trot out their collections of shady aromatics from the local shop. I feel you. But I'm not going to hammer at people who like their rum tobaccos.

Don't be the guy who says "I never smoke aromatics." That's like being the guy who says "I never drink Bud Light." First of all, why do you have to say it? Are you afraid of what people will think? And what if someone offers you some? The other day I was at a neighbor's house and he handed me a Bud Light. What am I going to say? "No, thanks, I never smoke aromatics"?

Second, the guy who says "I never smoke aromatics" is being close-minded. Have your opinions. Have your tastes. But be willing. Be open.

Don't be rude. Don't be an ass.

3. The guy who shows you his new lighter while saying of yours, "I used to light that way".

Do I need to say more?

"Maybe I like the taste of lighter fluid."
Oh, and here's a perfect lighter for you, buddy.

4. The guy who tells you how much he spent on his cigars.

You know this guy. First off, let's mention that pipe smokers don't behave this way. It seems to be a vice to which only cigar smokers are prone.

Every time you see this guy he's walking out of the shop with eight or ten or twelve cigars. And every time he finds a way to tell you that "This is a hundred and eighteen dollars worth of cigars right here."

Hey friend, I got a message for you.

5. The guy who thinks it's okay to be racist in a tobacco shop.

"Some of my best friends are black."

Before I say what I'm about to say, let me establish my bona fides. The douchebag count on the political left is way higher than the douchebag count on the right. It's not even close. Will I bother to substantiate that? No.

That being said, this section could almost be called "The guy who thinks it's okay to be stereotypically and moronically right wing in a tobacco shop." Cigar stores can very quickly begin to feel like a club. And the Republican to Democrat ration is overwhelmingly balanced to the right. So one moment you were having an interesting conversation, the next a couple of guys are piling in and not discussing, but talking like they know everyone in the room agrees with them.

The one that bugs me the most is the racist thing. Cigar shops are one of the main places I formed this opinion: Yankees are way more likely to express racism when they feel safe than Southerners are.


There you have it. Five asses of the tobacco world. Surely there are more. Please comment. If I get enough I'll write a whole 'nother post.

Peace be upon you, and happy puffing.


  1. How about the guys who critique your 'technique' for lighting, packing, tamping, or even ashing?

    As long as the smoker is enjoying their smoke, they're doing the right way!

  2. 1-The overbearing cigar or pipe rep who makes passive aggressive comments about what you're smoking or what you decided to buy. Especially when it is not their product. That one is always fun to deal with. Thankfully they are not all that common. I have experienced these as a manager of a tobacco shop and as a customer. Different shops in different states with different reps.
    2-The one upper is kinda like your 4 but I find to be more annoying. There isn't a situation in your life that he will not compete with... especially your cigar or pipe purchase.
    3-The rookie know it all. I have met a many of these fine creatures. Even when they don't know enough about tobacco to answer simple questions that wont stop them from telling you you're wrong. They also tend to be the ones who claim to only enjoy smoking Cuban cigars, especially Cohibas. Or they like really strong cigars like Macanudos.
    4-The loudmouth cheapskate. This is the guy who cannot understand how ANYONE would pay full retail for a cigar, pipe, tobacco, or anything for that matter, and will always purchase the cheapest cigar/pipe tobacco you have, complain about the price, and proceed to tell you the great deal they got online just this morning. I have dealt with more of these than I care to remember. You always hope no one else come into the shop while they are there.
    5-The veteran wannabe. Either you served in the military or you didn't. I have met a hand full of these asses along the way. Only a couple really stand out but they are supreme asses of the tobacco world non the less.
    6- The cigar bro. Typically these guys come in and only want Acid cigars... mainly because that's what their bro told them to go buy. Sometimes they turn out to be pretty cool guys but more often then not they are asses.

    Ever run into any of these Joffre?

    1. Oh, yes, 3, 4,and 5 especially. Great stuff, I'll probably steal it.


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